10 Causes of Maritime Accidents and Common Injuries

Many people are injured or killed in maritime accidents. There are many different causes of maritime accidents. There is no one cause, but some common injuries can be directly caused by a maritime accident. Some of the most common incidents include getting caught in machinery and falling overboard.

1. Slips and Falls

Slips and falls can be caused by several factors, including a vacant space or an uneven floor surface. While they are not often deadly, they are potentially serious injuries that can lead to considerable medical costs and hospitalizations.


2. Moving Equipment or Machinery Accidents

Moving equipment or machinery, such as vehicles or ships, are dangerous. When they move, they can make contact with other objects or surfaces due to inertia, sudden changes that can occur in the environment, or out-of-control movement. An injury or damage may occur as a result.

3. Welding Accidents

Welding accidents are more likely to occur at night, when background light may obscure a welder’s vision. Welding can also happen on land, as well as in water. As a result, oil drums, containers, and other equipment used to hold flammable liquids are not permitted in marinas or on piers without the permission of the Department of Transportation.

4. Negligence During Vessel Operation

Negligence during vessel operation is usually caused by the fact that most operators do not observe their duty of care, and they interfere to some degree with the activity of a sea vessel that they control.

Most accidents involving vessels and merchant marine can be traced back to human error or negligence. Maritime law is complex, you should contact a maritime injury lawyer for help if you’re an injured maritime worker or passenger.

5. Fires and Explosions

Marine fires and explosions can pose significant hazards to mariners and their equipment. While there are many types of marine fires and explosions, most involve the use of flammable liquids. Fires can occur from the misuse or overuse of chemicals, fuels, and lubricants stored on board vessels or cargo holds.

6. Explosions Due to a Buildup of Gas Fumes

A build-up of gas fumes from cargo or containers within a ship can seriously threaten the ship’s crew, passengers, and property. This can lead to dangerous situations for those aboard, so you must know what can cause them and how you can prevent them.

7. Breathing in Toxic Chemicals, Acrid Smoke, or Other Harmful Substances

Breathing in toxic chemicals, smoke, or other harmful substances can cause immediate or delayed health effects. The exposure can immediately affect breathing, leading to coughing and irritation of the throat and lungs. In addition, many harmful substances change how the human body processes other chemicals.

8. Getting Caught in Machinery, Tools, or Moving Parts

Getting caught in machinery, tools, or moving parts is one of the most common maritime hazards. An unanchored boom can become a threat if boats get swung forward by the wind while anchored and hit someone on or near the bow or stern.

9. Injuries From Falling Overboard

Injuries from falling overboard can sometimes be classified as “drowning” injuries, but this is an unfortunate misnomer. However, even if you fall into the water and swim to shore or do not fall over, there is still a chance that you can experience severe damage to your body or death. This depends on many factors, such as weather conditions or the time of day an incident occurs.

10. Improper Maintenance of Ship

When ships are not adequately maintained, there is an increased risk of accidents such as fires or flooding. Ships can be maintained with a full range of services, such as:

  • Repair and maintenance
  • Cleaning
  • Refueling

Contact a Lawyer for Legal Assistance

While many causes have been suggested to have led to commercial watercraft accidents, the most common one is human error. Maintaining a safe, efficient marine vessel is essential to keep your employees and the environment safe. Proper training and being adequately prepared will help keep all parties involved safe.

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